Many educators become pensive at the end of the summer; as we get ready to return to the classroom, we cannot help but think about how we won’t have much time to actually *think* for months at a time as we enter a whirlwind of teaching activity. Think now! Think!
This summer I have been thinking about a novel I read long ago, Cry the Beloved Country, a novel published in 1948 and written by Alan Paton. (See more here: Cry the Beloved Country.)
While this novel is a renowned novel about South Africa, the urgency, sadness, and beauty of the country strikes me to this day and the title–Cry, the Beloved Country. This is how I felt after seeing Spike Lee’s latest movie, The Blackkklansman. Cry, beloved America. Is there hope for us? Is there? Can we reach across the years and miles and truly love and respect all Americans?
The news from Washington? Cry, cry, beloved America.
And then I think of returning to the classroom next week and I could weep again for other reasons.
I so strongly believe in the power of literacy to improve lives, and I am so very proud to always have been a teacher of literacy in a nation that educates all students. All students. I am no longer teaching high school, but when I see my class rosters and check into the background of my students I feel very proud, happy, a bit scared, but mostly so very excited to be a reading instructor at the community college level.
My students, as they usually are, will be those for whom English is not a first language, or those whom struggle with reading and writing.
That’s why I am there, to help them. To create lessons that will invite them to the literacy table, a great strong table.
I so desperately believe in the great promise of educating all students and I so strongly feel pride in our community college system.
So come to class students; I am waiting eagerly to meet you and start our literacy journey together.
Thanks for reading.